Unless I have actual business to take care of there, I avoid large main streets like the plague. Notorious among the avoidees is London’s Oxford Street, which is a shitty thoroughfare full of tourists and other scum, all taking selfies and being fleeced by the stores selling the most awful tat (British for tchotchkes) while they try to persuade themselves they’re having a great time in the world’s best city.
My advice: turn off the rotten thing as soon as you can — as I did when I walked down Soho’s Wardour Street, which is a narrow lane full of interesting places…
…such as the Pickle & Toast, which specializes in cheese toasties (grilled cheese sandwiches, to my Murkin Readers):
Exhausted by having had to walk a block down Oxford Street, I badly needed a cup of tea so I went inside.
I ordered my cuppa, and then sat down to drink it and relax awhile — but the smell of sourdough toast was too wonderful, so I ordered a cheese toastie. This was also because the place does not use just any old cheese, no sirree. This is the stuff they use:
It’s Quicke’s Cheddar, from Devon; and the sandwich looks like this:
Good grief. I could have eaten three, and the rest of the menu looked just as tasty — and they serve breakfast too, but I got there just too late. To say that this beats a Big Mac on Oxford Street is to utter the understatement of the century.
And just so we’re all clear on the concept: I could have eaten at about a dozen different places along Wardour Street, and I probably would have had just as good a time and just as good a meal. Now you know.
Delenda est Via Oxonium.
In Comments to an earlier post, Longtime Reader & Friend Mh bewailed the lack of decent South African boerewors (sausage) available in the U.S. of A.
In the interests of Reader bennies, allow me to point all my Dallas-area Readers / visitors to Hirsch’s Meats in Plano, which has not only boerewors, but better boerewors than I’ve been able to find here in South Africa so far. It’s made to an original Afrikaans recipe, by the way.
The lovely stuff is kept in the freezers on the right as you enter the store, and people fly in from out of town to buy it there. The store assistants tell me that their boerewors is the only product in the entire store which is bought in multiple packs by customers (I typically buy three or four at a time myself; others buy still more). They are seldom if ever out of stock, too; if there’s none in the freezer, they’ll usually have some in the back which just hasn’t been put out yet. Ask in that unlikely event. (Warning: they’re closed on Sundays and Mondays.)
For best results, toss it on the barbie (or, if you want to go all ethnic, have a braaivleis). Just don’t overcook it, or it will be dry — the fat bursts out of the skin quite quickly. When ready, it should look like this:
As I said earlier, I eat it for breakfast every single day, except when I’m in Britishland or Yurp. I think I’ll have some now, come to think of it.
If ever you want to know why Britain’s leaving the EU (“Brexit”) is not only a Good Thing, but absolutely vital, here’s proof:
A change in European Union rules could see doner kebabs banned across the continent, infuriating takeaways and fast-food lovers.
The European Union’s legislature is moving to ban the phosphates used in the slabs of meat at the heart of the popular street snack that originated in Turkey.
Up-in-arms kebab vendors in Germany have skewered the idea.
EU lawmakers are citing health concerns based on studies that linked phosphates to cardiovascular disease.
Just so we’re all clear what’s being discussed here, this is what these tools want to ban:
Lamb Shwarma happens to be one of my favorite “fast foods”; and nobody tell my kids about this or else there’ll be murders (as they say Over Here). Along with pizza and crêpes, doner was one of their staple street foods when we traveled together in Euroland: cheap, filling and delicious; and if these disappeared from Europe, it would be a major disincentive to go there. I’m not kidding.
And if the above pic has made yer mouth start to water, I’m sorry (not really).
File this under “There ought to be a law”:
UK McDonald’s Run Out Of Bacon
Furious fast food lovers went into meltdown this morning after dozens of McDonald’s restaurants in the UK ran out of bacon.
Customers were unable to purchase popular breakfast items from the menu, including bacon rolls, bacon and egg McMuffins and bacon and egg bagels.
Restaurants in Devon, Essex, West Sussex and Greater Manchester have run out of pork and customers took to Twitter to vent their anger.
As well they should. I think it actually IS a law in parts of the U.S.:
Section 2 Part I:
No restaurant should ever run out of bacon, under penalty of imprisonment for the manager thereof.
I saw it on the Internet; it must be true.
File this under “Stuff you can do in Britishland that you can’t do in Murka”:
Back when I lived in Chicago, I used to joke that as you traveled south from there, the gun laws became easier and the liquor laws more stupid. (We could buy Scotch at the Treasure Island supermarket 24/7 except for midnight-midday on Sundays. But a gun? Fergeddabahtit. In Texas, you can buy a gun at a gun show without any hassle, but gawd help you if you try to order a whisky in a dry-county restaurant.)
It looks as though the same parallel works in an east-west direction vis-à-vis the UK and the US.
Of course, I think that Amazon Over Here offers liquor over the Internet simply because of the strange and unpredictable hours of business that UK retailers inflict on their customers.
And especially to my kids, who are cooking a “Friendsgiving” dinner for a bunch of their buddies who also can’t be with their families today:
Do Your Mom Proud.
All My Love,